Small-market teams often have to compensate for so much because they do not bring in the revenue of your coastal, more often-covered teams (ESPN, we’re sneering at you).
Be it salary cap issues, diva players pricing themselves out of reach or even the media market doesn’t quite give enough exposure for the free agency market, these teams are getting hammered.
While fixing that conundrum for the MLB is another post for another day, small market teams need all the love they can surmise. Typically, that is done with the in-between inning shows. The beleaguered Kansas City Royals are one of those teams.
Despite its mid-market location and range, the Kansas City Royals have quite a lion’s share of exposure across the midwest. A good portion of its fanfare is the involvement of its lovable mascot Sluggerrr (yes, three Rs). The mascot is involved with the community, loves the kids and has a schtick that’s a favorite of overeaters anonymous: he hurls fresh hot dogs into the stands.
Good times, right? Whelp, if you are John Coomer, the answer is “Not so much.” In 2009 — as in nearly five years ago — a now-53-year-old John Coomer was at a Kansas City Royals game enjoying America’s pastime when Sluggerrr came to his section with hot dogs in tow. Sluggerrr sees the man and decides to get all Eric Hosmer with it and throws a dog behind his back.
Then…Holy optometrist…it smacks Coomer in the eye who was sitting six rows behind third base. Enter into the world of litigious happenings, we have a lawsuit equaling $25,000 of damages. Two years later, even though Coomer claims he was left with a detached retina, Sluggerrr and the Kansas City Royals were held blameless in the lawsuit.
Yeah, about that. According to FOXNews, the Missouri Supreme Court is now weighing in because the austere group of legal beagles are not sure the infamous “baseball rule” is in effect here. (Talk about not having enough to do at work. Damn.)
The Missouri Supreme Court is weighing whether the “baseball rule” — a legal standard that protects teams from being sued over fan injuries caused by events on the field, court or rink — should also apply to injuries caused by mascots or the other personnel that teams employ to engage fans and justify steep ticket prices. Because the case could set a legal precedent, it could change how teams in other cities and sports approach interacting with fans at their games.
If I could make this stuff up, I would be in Hollywood so fast. But since I can’t, I’m stuck at my desk moonlighting this fun stuff for America. God bless it, hot dogs and all.